The Lexus LF-LC Hybrid Sports Coupé Concept has been unveiled at the Detroit motor show, and Lexus's US chief Mark Templin has described the bold car as, ‘a sneak peak of what we're up to in the future’.
Created by the Calty design studio in California, the LF-LC is intended as a driver-focused vehicle that displays a possible future design direction for the premium manufacturer.
The futuristic styling of the car evolves the L-Finesse design language for Lexus’s production cars, seen in its latest more aggressive guise on the new Lexus GS and to make it onto next year’s new Lexus IS.
After unveiling the LF-LC, Templin said: ‘This is the styling direction we’re taking. We want to excite the customer with something new. From GS onwards, all Lexuses will look better, drive better, have better electronics and be even safer.'
One of the LF-LC’s key features is a one-piece glass roof that also serves as the windscreen and rear screen. The concept car’s glass roof has a lightweight, cantilevered pillar that’s inspired by modern architecture and improves visibility as well as enhancing the LF-LC’s sleek lines.
Other features include a plunging ‘waterfall’ front grille, which takes Lexus’s current spindle grille design to new extremes, and rear lights inspired by the afterburner of a jet fighter.
The front-engined, rear-wheel drive LF-LC features the manufacturer’s Advanced Lexus Hybrid Drive.
Inside, the cabin is finished in a combination of smooth leather and suede, with brushed metal trim and wood. The LF-LC features lightweight, race-inspired front seats and a racing-style steering wheel containing integrated controls and a start button.
The LF-LC features a remote touch-screen system that allows the driver to operate controls without shifting position or altering line-of-sight. Twin 12.3in LCD screens provide information and navigation displays.
A touch-screen in the centre console is used to control the audio system, climate controls and navigation, with a pop-up touch-screen keyboard for more complex commands. Similar touch-screen surfaces on each door are used to operate the windows, mirrors, seat positions and personal entertainment settings.
Some elements of the LF-LC preview a luxurious new 2+2 coupe that Lexus is known to be considering for production.
If a production version of the Lexus LF-LC is given the green light, it will use a shortened version of the next-generation LS’s platform, which is due to go into production in 2014. It is likely to take the LC600h badge for production and feature a hi-tech hybrid drivetrain.